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Q&A with Federico Gallinari on reuniting with brother Danilo in Detroit

When Motor City Cruise player development coach Federico Gallinari’s brother Danilo was traded to the Pistons, the two realized a dream of helping an NBA organization together.

Motor City Cruise player development coach Federico Gallinari
Federico Gallinari, @gallofede9 on Instagram

The recent trade between the Detroit Pistons and Washington Wizards didn’t only shuffle multiple players and draft picks from one team to another, it reunited two brothers under one NBA team’s umbrella.

On Sunday, Washington sent Danilo Gallinari and Mike Muscala to the Pistons for Marvin Bagley III, Isaiah Livers, and two second-round picks, as first reported by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. A cap clearing move for Detroit which also brought in two veterans that can help address needed roles within their rotation. Beyond the goals that both sides hoped to accomplish, the deal reunited Gallinari with his younger brother.

Federico Gallinari is a player development coach for the Motor City Cruise, the NBA G League affiliate for the Pistons. Now, the two brothers get to support the same NBA organization in different ways, all while standing by each other’s side.

After the Cruise’s most recent game, Federico spoke with Detroit Bad Boys about the trade, what his older brother can bring to the Pistons, and more. That conversation is below, which has been edited for both clarity and length.


How did you find out Danilo was being traded to Detroit?

Federico: I found out the day before because my brother was talking to his agent and he called me and told me that we might be having dinner together in a couple of days. When I asked what he meant he said, “You’re going to see that I might end up in Detroit.” So I knew what was going on a little bit before.

What was that moment like when you heard the news and realized you both would be in the same city?

Federico: It was a dream come true. Danilo and I talked a lot of times about being in the same city or with the same team and being able to live together and do something like that. The first comment he made was asking me to start looking at apartments with two bedrooms and two bathrooms so we can start living together.

What do you think Danilo will bring to the Pistons organization both on the court and in the locker room?

Federico: On the court, he’s a great shooter. He’s a stretch forward so he’s able to play inside and outside and play different roles which is something that can definitely help the Pistons. Off the court, he’s a vet, so I think he can really bring the guys together and show an example of how you should work in the NBA. I think he’s a great fit for the team.

What was your message to Danilo about the organization after spending time here yourself? What did you want him to know?

Federico: I definitely wanted him to know that it’s a very supportive organization. Everything you need, any help that you need is always going to be there no matter what. I think the Pistons probably have one of the best facilities he has ever been in and I have ever been in, so it will be great for his body and his workouts.

It’s a great environment. People are always happy and have great energy. So for him, coming from the Wizards where lately he didn’t play much and his mental space wasn’t at the best to now come here with me and all these people that have great energy is great for him to get back to the mental space that he’s always been in.

After spending time in Detroit yourself, is there anything you’re looking forward to showing him around the city?

Federico: I think that sometimes people think Detroit is not the best city, but it’s a great city. Danilo and I actually love speakeasies, some of the hidden bars, so I’m definitely going to take him around the city to show him a little bit of the nightlife: the speakeasies and all of that.

Do you have a specific speakeasy that’s your go to?

Federico: I really like Bad Luck Bar [in Downtown Detroit].

What would you say personally is your dream role in this organization or in basketball overall?

Federico: The goal is to become a head coach one day. Or stepping into the NBA as a player development coach or a similar role would be great, just making it to the next level. The G League is a grind. It’s a time to learn and then take the step forward. But I definitely want to stay on the coaching side of things, that would be great.

Who has the better jump shot, you or Danilo?

Federico: Me, definitely.

Featured image courtesy of Federico Gallinari, @gallofede9 on Instagram.